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Greek & Latin Roots + Usage Examples

Quiz yourself by thinking what should be in each of the black spaces below before clicking on it to display the answer.

acer, acid, acri   bitter, sour, sharp - acerbic, acidity, acrid, acrimony  
acu   sharp - acute, acupuncture, accurate  
ag, agi, ig, act   do, move, go - agent, agenda, agitate, navigate, ambiguous, action  
ali, allo, alter   other - alias, alibi, alien, alloy, alter, alter ego, altruism  
alt(us)   high, deep - altimeter, altitude  
am, amor   love, liking - amiable, amorous, enamoured  
Anni, annu, enni   year - anniversary, annually, centennial  
anthrop   man - anthropology, misanthrope, philanthropy  
anti(co)   old - antique, antiquated, antiquity  
arch   chief, first, rule - archangel, architect, archaic, monarchy, matriarchy, patriarchy, Archeozoic era  
aster, astr   star - aster, asterisk, asteroid, astronomy, astronaut  
aud, aus   hear, listen - audiology, auditorium, audio, audition, ausculate  
aug, auc   increase - augur, augment, auction  
auto, aut   self - automobile, autograph, automatic  
belli   war - rebellion, belligerent, casus belli, bellicose  
bibl   book - Bible, bibliography, bibliomania  
bio   life - biology, biometrics, biome, biosphere  
brev   short - abbreviate, brief  
cad, cas   to fall - cadaver, cadence, cascade  
calor   heat - calorie, caloric, calorimeter  
cap, cip, cept   take - capable, intercept, forceps, capture, except, reciprocate  
capit, capt   head - decapitate, capital, captain, caption  
carn   flesh - carnivorous, incarnate, reincarnation, carnal  
caus, caut   burn, heat - caustic, cauldron, cauterize  
cause, cuse, cus   cause, motive - because, excuse, accusation  
ced, ceed, cede, cess   move, yield, go, surrender - procedure, proceed, cede, concede, recede, precede, accede, success  
cenetri   center - concentric, centrifugal, centripetal, eccentric  
chrom   color - chrome, chromosome, polychrome, chromatic  
chron   time - chronology, chronometer, synchronize  
cide, cise   cut down, kill - homicide, exorcise, germicide, incision, scissors  
cit   call, start - incite, citation, cite  
civ   citizen - civic, civil, civilian, civilization  
clam, claim   cry out - exclamation, clamor, proclamation, reclamation, acclaim  
clud, clus, claus   shut - include, conclude, recluse, claustrophobia, occlusion, occult  
cognoac, gnosi   know - recognize, prognosis, cognoscenti, incognito, agnostic  
cord, cor, cardi   heart - cordial, concord, discord, courage, encourage  
corp   body - corporation, corporal punishment, corpse, corpulent, corpus luteum  
cosm   universe, world - cosmos, microcosm, cosmopolitan, cosmonaut  
crat, cracy   rule - autocrat, aristocrat, theocracy, technocracy  
crea   create - creature, recreation, creation  
cred   believe - creed, credo, credence, credit, credulous, incredulous, incredible  
cresc, cret, crease, cru   rise, grow - crescendo, concrete, increase, decrease, accrue  
crit   separate, choose - critical, criterion, hypocrite  
cur, curs   run - current, concurrent, concur, incur, recur, occur, courier, precursor, cursive  
cura   care - curator, curative, manicure  
cycl, cyclo   wheel, circular - Cyclops, unicycle, bicycle, cyclone, cyclic  
deca   ten - decade, decalogue, decathlon, decahedron  
dem   people - democracy, demography, epidemic  
dent, dont   tooth - dental, denture, orthodontist, periodontal  
derm   skin - hypodermic, dermatology, epidermis, taxidermy  
dict   say, speak - dictation, dictionary, dictate, dictator, Dictaphone, edict, predict, verdict, contradict, benediction  
doc, dokein   teach - doctrine, indoctrinate, document, dogma, dogmatic  
domin   master - dominate, dominion, predominant, domain  
don   give - donate, condone  
dorm   sleep - dormant, dormitory  
dox   opinion, praise - orthodox, heterodox, paradox, doxology  
drome   run, step - syndrome (run together), hippodrome (place where horses run)  
duc, duct   lead - induce, seduce (lead aside), produce, reduce  
dura   hard, lasting - durable, duration, endure  
dynam   power - dynamo, dynamic, dynamite, hydrodynamics  
endo   within - endorse, endocardial, endoskeletal, endoskeleton, endosperm  
equi   equal - equinox, equilibrium, equipoise  
erg   work - energy, erg, allergy, ergometer, ergograph, ergophobia  
fac, fact, fic, fect   do, make - factory, fact, manufacture, amplification, confection  
fall, fals   deceive - fallacy, falsify, fallacious  
fer   bear, carry - ferry, coniferous, fertile, defer, infer, refer, transfer  
fid, fide, feder(is)   faith, trust - confidante, fidelity, confident, infidelity, infidel, federal, confederacy, semper fi  
fila, fili   thread - filigree, filament, filter, filet, filibuster  
fin   end, ended, finished - final, finite, finish, confine, fine, refine, define, finale  
fix   fix - fix, fixation, fixture, affix, prefix, suffix  
flex, flect   bend - flex, reflex, flexible, flexor, inflexibility, reflect, deflect  
flu, fluc, fluv   flowing - influence, fluid, flue, flush, fluently, fluctuate  
form   form, shape - form, uniform, conform, formulary, perform, formal, formula  
fort, forc   strong - fort, fortress, fortify, forte, fortitude  
fract, frag   break- fracture, infraction, fragile, fraction, refract  
gam   marriage - bigamy, monogamy, polygamy  
gastr(o)   stomach - gastric, gastronomic, gastritis, gastropod  
gen   birth, race, produce - genesis, genetics, eugenics, genealogy, generate, genetic, antigen, pathogen  
geo   earth - geometry, geography, geocentric, geology  
germ   vital part - germination, germ, germane  
gest   carry, bear - congest, gestation  
gloss, glot   tongue - glossary, polyglot, epiglottis  
glu, glo   lump, bond, glue - glue, agglutinate, conglomerate  
grad, gress   step, go - grade, gradual, graduate, progress, graduated, egress  
graph, gram   write, written - graph, graphic, autograph, photography, graphite, telegram  
grat   pleasing - congratulate, gratuity, grateful, ingrate  
grav   heavy, weighty - grave, gravity, aggravate, gravitate  
greg   herd - gregarious, congregation, segregate, gregarian  
hypn   sleep - hypnosis, hypnotherapy  
helio   sun - heliograph, heliotrope, heliocentric  
hema, hemo   blood - hemorrhage, hemoglobin, hemophilia, hemostat  
here, hes   stick - adhere, cohere, cohesion, inherent, hereditary  
hetero   different - heterogeneous, heterosexual, heterodox  
homo   same - homogeneous, homonym, homogenize  
hum, human   earth, ground, man - humus, exhume, humane  
hydr, hydra, hydro   water - dehydrate, hydrant, hydraulic, hydraulics, hydrogen, hydrophobia  
ignis   fire - ignite, igneous, ignition  
ject   throw - deject, inject, project, eject, interject  
join, junct   join - adjoining, enjoin, juncture, conjunction, injunction, conjunction  
juven   young - juvenile, rejuvenate  
lau, lav, lot, lut   wash - launder, lavatory, lotion, ablution, dilute  
leg   law - legal, legislate, legislature, legitimize  
levi   light - alleviate, levitate, levity  
liber, liver   free - liberty, liberal, liberalize, deliverance  
liter   letters - literary, literature, literal, alliteration, obliterate  
loc, loco   place - locality, allocate, locomotion  
log, logo, ology   word, study, speech - catalog, prologue, dialogue, logogram (symbol representing a word), zoology  
loqu, locut   talk, speak - eloquent, loquacious, colloquial, circumlocution  
luc, lum, lus, lun   light - translucent, luminary, luster, luna (moon goddess)  
macr-, macer   lean - emaciated, meager  
magn   great - magnify, magnificent, magnanimous, magnate, magnitude, magnum  
man   hand - manual, manage, manufacture, manacle, manicure, manifest, maneuver, emancipate  
mand   command - mandatory, remand, mandate  
mania   madness - mania, maniac, kleptomania, pyromania  
mar, mari, mer   sea, pool - marine, marsh, maritime, mermaid  
matri   mother - matrimony, maternal, matriarchate, matron  
medi   half, middle, between, halfway - mediate, medieval, Mediterranean, mediocre, medium  
mega   great - megaphone, megalopolis, megacycle (a million cycles), megaton  
mem   remember - memo, commemoration, memento, memoir, memorable  
meter   measure - meter, voltammeter, barometer, thermometer  
micro   small - microscope, microfilm, microcard, microwave, micrometer  
migra   wander - migrate, emigrant, immigrate  
mit, miss   send - emit, remit, submit, admit, commit, permit, transmit, omit, intermittent, mission, missile  
mob, mot, mov   move - mobile, motionless, motor  
mon   warn, remind - monument, admonition, monitor, premonition  
mor, mort   mortal, death - mortal, immortal, mortality, mortician, mortuary  
morph   form - amorphous, dimorphic, metamorphosis, morphology  
multi   many, much - multifold, multilingual, multiped, multiply  
nat, nasc   to be from, to spring forth - innate, natal, native, renaissance  
neo   new - Neolithic, nuveau riche, neologism, neophyte, neonate  
neur   nerve - neuritis, neuropathic, neurologist, neural, neurotic  
nom   law, order - autonomy, astronomy, gastronomy, economy  
nomen, nomin   name - nomenclature, nominate, ignominious  
nov   new - novel, renovate, novice, nova, innovate  
nox, noc   night - nocturnal, equinox, noctilucent  
numer   number - numeral, numeration, enumerate, innumerable  
numisma   coin - numismatics  
oligo   few, little - Oligocene, oligosaccharide, oligotrophic, oligarchy  
omni   all, every - omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, omnivorous  
onym   name - anonymous, pseudonym, antonym, synonym  
oper   work - operate, cooperate, opus  
ortho   straight, correct - orthodox, orthodontist, orthopedic, unorthodox  
pac   peace - pacifist, pacify, pacific ocean  
paleo   old - Paleozoic, Paleolithic, paleomagnetism, paleopsychology  
pan   all - Pan-American, pan-African, panacea, pandemonium (place of all the demons),  
pater, patr   father - paternity, patriarch, patriot, patron, patronize  
path, pathy   feeling, suffering - pathos, sympathy, antipathy, apathy, telepathy  
ped, pod   foot - pedal, impede (get feet in a trap), pedestrian, centipede, tripod, podiatry, antipode  
pedo   child - orthopedic, pedagogue, pediatrics  
pel, puls   drive, urge - compel, dispel, expel, repel, propel, pulse, impulse, pulsate, compulsory, expulsion, repulsive  
pend, pens, pond   hang, weigh - pendant, pendulum, suspend, appendage, pensive  
phage   eat - macrophage, bacteriophage  
phil   love - philosophy, philanthropy, philharmonic, bibliophile  
phlegma   inflammation - phlegm, phlegmatic  
phobia, phobos   fear - phobia, claustrophobia, acrophobia, aquaphobia, ergophobia, homophobia  
phon   sound - phonograph, phonetic, symphony, homophone, euphonious  
photo   light - photograph, photoelectric, photogenic, photosynthesis  
plac, plais   please - placid, placebo, placate, complacent  
plu, plur, plus   more - plural, pluralist, plus  
pneuma, pneumon   breath - pneumatic, pneumonia,  
pod   (see ped)  
poli   city - metropolis, police, politics, Indianapolis, megalopolis, acropolis  
poly   many - polysaccharide, polyandrous, polytheistic  
pon, pos, pound   place, put - postpone, component, opponent, proponent, expose, impose, deposit, posture, position, expound, impound  
pop   people - population, populous, popular  
port   carry - porter, portable, transport, report, export, import, support, transportation  
portion   part, share - portion, proportion  
pot   power - potential, potentate, impotent  
prehendere   seize, grasp - apprehend, comprehend, comprehensive, prehensile  
prim, prime   first - primacy, prima donna, primitive, primary, primal, primeval  
proto   first - prototype, protocol, protagonist, protozoan, Proterozoic, protoindustrial  
psych   mind, soul - psyche, psychiatry, psychology, psychosis  
punct   point, dot - punctual, punctuation, puncture, acupuncture, punctuation  
reg, recti   straighten - regiment, regular, rectify, correct, direct, rectangle  
ri, ridi, risi   laughter - deride, ridicule, ridiculous, derision, risible  
rog, roga   ask - prerogative, interrogation, derogatory  
rupt   break - rupture, interrupt, abrupt, disrupt, ruptible  
sacr, sanc, secr   sacred - sacred, sacrosanct, sanction, consecrate, desecrate  
salv, salu   safe, healthy - salvation, salvage, salutation  
sat, satis   enough - satient (giving pleasure, satisfying), saturate, satisfy  
sci, scientia   know - science, conscious, omniscient, cognocienti  
scope   see, watch - telescope, microscope, kaleidoscope, periscope, stethoscope  
scrib, script   write - scribe, scribble, inscribe, describe, subscribe, prescribe, manuscript  
sed, sess, sid   sit - sediment, session, obsession, possess, preside, president, reside, subside  
sen   old - senior, senator, senile  
senescere   to grow old - senescence, evanescent  
sent, sens   feel - sentiment, consent, resent, dissent, sentimental, sense, sensation, sensitive, sensory, dissension  
sequ, secu, sue   follow - sequence, consequence, sequel, subsequent, prosecute, consecutive, second, ensue, pursue  
serv   save, serve - servant, service, subservient, servitude, preserve, conserve, reservation, deserve, conservation, observe  
sign, signi   sign, mark, seal - signal, signature, design, insignia, significant  
simil, simul   like, resembling - similar, assimilate, simulate, simulacrum, simultaneous  
sist, sta, stit   stand - assist, persist, circumstance, stamina, status, state, static, stable, stationary, substitute  
solus   alone - solo, soliloquy, solitaire, solitude  
solv, solu   loosen - solvent, solve, absolve, resolve, soluble, solution, resolution, resolute, dissolute  
somnus   sleep - insomnia, somnambulist  
soph   wise - sophomore (wise fool), philosophy, sophisticated  
spec, spect, spic   look - specimen, specific, spectator, spectacle, aspect, speculate, inspect, respect, prospect, retrospective, introspective, expect, conspicuous  
sphere   ball, sphere - sphere, stratosphere, hemisphere, spheroid  
spir   breath - spirit, conspire, inspire, aspire, expire, perspire, respiration  
string, strict   draw tight - stringent, strict, restrict, constrict, boa constrictor  
stru, struct   build - construe (build in the mind, interpret), structure, construct, instruct, obstruct, destruction, destroy  
sume, sump   take, use, waste - consume, assume (to take, to use), sump pump presumption (to take or use before knowing all the facts  
tact, tang, tag, tig, ting   touch -tactile, contact, intact, intangible, tangible, contagious, contiguous  
tele   far - telephone, telegraph, telegram, telescope, television, telephoto, telecast, telepathy  
tempo   time - tempo, temporary, extemporaneously, contemporary, pro tem, temporal  
ten, tin, tain   hold - tenacious, tenant, tenure, untenable, detention, retentive, content, pertinent, continent, obstinate, contain, abstain, pertain, detain  
tend, tent, tens   stretch, strain - tendency, extend, intend, contend, pretend, superintend, tender, extent, tension, pretense  
terra   earth -terrain, terrarium, territory, terrestrial  
test   to bear witness - testament, detest, testimony, attest  
the, theo   God, a god - monotheism, polytheism, atheism, theology  
therm   heat - thermometer, theorem, thermal, thermos bottle, thermostat, hypothermia  
thesis, thet   place, put - antithesis, hypothesis, synthesis, epithet  
tom   cut - atom (not cuttable), appendectomy, tonsillectomy, dichotomy, anatomy  
tort, tors   twist - torture (twisting to inflict pain) retort, extort, distort, contort, torsion, tortuous, torturous  
tox   poison - toxic, intoxicate, antitoxin  
tract, tra   draw, pull - tractor, attract, subtract, tractable, abstract, subtrahend  
tom   cut - atom (not cutable, smallest particle of matter), appendectomy, tonsillectomy, dichotomy, anatomy  
tort, tors   twist - torture (twisting to inflict pain), retort, extort (twist out), distort, contort, torsion  
tox   poison - toxic, intoxicate, antitoxin  
tract, tra   draw, pull - tractor, attract, traction, subtract, tractable, abstract (to draw away), subtrahend (the number to be drawn away from another).  
trib   pay, bestow - tribute, contribute, attribute, retribution, tributary  
turbo   disturb - turbulent, disturb, turbid, turmoil  
typ   print - type, prototype, typical, typography, typewriter, typology, typify  
ultima   last - ultimate, ultimatum  
umber, umbraticum   shadow - umbra, penumbra, (take) umbrage, adumbrate  
uni   one - unicorn, unify, university, unanimous, universal  
vac   empty - vacate, vacuum, evacuate, vacation, vacant, vacuous  
vale, vali, valu   strength, worth - equivalent, valiant, validity, evaluate, value, valor  
ven, vent   come - convene, intervene, venue, convenient, avenue, circumvent, invent, convent, venture, event, advent, prevent  
ver, veri   true - very, aver, verdict, verity, verify, verisimilitude  
vert, vers   turn - avert, divert, invert, introvert, convertible, reverse, controversy, versatile  
vic, vicis   change, substitute - vicarious, vicar, vicissitude  
vict, vinc   conquer - victor, evict, convict, convince, invincible  
vid, vis   see - video, evident, provide, providence, visible, revise, supervise, vista, visit, vision  
viv, vita, vivi   alive, life - revive, survive, vivid, vivacious, vitality, vivisection  
voc   call - vocation, avocation, convocation, invocation, evoke, provoke, revoke, advocate, provocative, vocal  
vol   will - malevolent, benevolent, volunteer, volition  
volcan   fire - volcano, vulcanize, Vulcan  
volvo   turn about, roll - revolve, voluble (easily turned about or around or talkative), voluminous, convolution  
vor   eat greedily - voracious, carnivorous, herbivorous, omnivorous, devour  
zo   animal - zoo (short for zoological garden), zoology, zoomorphism (attributing animal form to god), zodiac (circle of animal constellations), protozoan  


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